Art & Entertainment | Book Reviews | Education | Entertainment Video | Health | Lifestyle | Sport | Sport Video | Search

 


New Zealand’s premier ballooning competition has a new champ

New Zealand’s premier ballooning competition has a new champion

The cream of New Zealand’s competitive balloonists rose to the top on Saturday as the final target was set to decide the champion of champions.

The Wairarapa Balloon Fiesta, celebrating its 16th stunning days with a mass ascension, which involved 22 balloons lifting-off within 10 minutes, a New Zealand record on Thursday and another perfect lift-off from Carrington Park in Carterton on Friday.

Due to deteriorating weather conditions because of cyclone Lusi, the Martinborough event on Saturday ended up being the last leg of the competition.

After two perfect days of flying, Martinborough was the big decider as 22 pilots pitted their skill and read the winds in an attempt to score maximum points on a target laid in the heart of the wine village.

And it was tight competition. Going into day three, it was neck and neck with young Christchurch balloonist Nicholas Oakley, a New Zealand under 21 gliding champion just a few points behind seasoned Nelson balloonist John Clifton. Nicholas was gunning hard for 2013 champ, Scott Cursons of Wellington to take out the top spot, but Scott wasn’t in the running leading into day three.

What clinched the competition was pure skill and knowledge of low level wind conditions that got John Clifton enough left turn to put him precisely over the target to score maximum points.

John, who has been a top three placer over the past five years took out top points to claim first place, with Nicholas Oakley having to settle for second place and Carterton pilot Peter King coming in third.

Balloonmeister Martyn Stacey says pilots want to fly, compete and enjoy the area and the people. “Once again Wairarapa has put on an awesome display from great weather to the most positive responses from the public that left the pilots with big smiles and wanting to return again next year.”

“Once again thanks to great organisers, who volunteer to make sure the event is the best it can be for the people of the Wairarapa. Feedback from locals and people all over New Zealand has been extremely positive. I look forward to doing it all again next year.”

Even after 16 years, no one had tired of the fiesta, said event organiser Jonathan Hooker. “With an event that is 100 per cent dependent on the weather, we had an incredible first three mornings even though the bad weather finally hit. It didn’t take any sparkle away from what is a premier event for the Wairarapa and New Zealand and New Zealand balloonists.”

End

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 
Ray Columbus: NZ Music Icon Passes Away

60s New Zealand music Icon Ray Columbus has passed away peacefully at his home north of Auckland... Ray Columbus enjoyed more than three decades at the top of NZ entertainment as a singer, songwriter, bandleader, music manager and TV star. More>>

Review: Bernard Herrmann's Scores For 'Vertigo' & 'Psycho'

Howard Davis: The NZSO's adventurousness was richly-rewarded, as the deeply appreciative Wellington audience was given the opportunity not only to see a couple of Alfred Hitchcock's greatest films, but also to hear fine renditions of two of Bernard Herrmann's most accomplished film scores. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Leonard Cohen

If Bob Dylan owned the 1960s, Leonard Cohen was an inescapable presence during the early 1970s period, pre-disco and pre-punk. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Review Of Books: Pick And Camera

Through the eyes of a miner – the photography of Joseph Divis: The occupations of miner and photographer are seldom combined. The conjunction must have been very rare indeed in the era before hand-held cameras, high-speed film and flashlights More>>


Howard Davis: Review - The Cosmic Dance Of 'String Theory'

Fly My Pretties sixth album is quite possibly their best yet - a concept album in the best sense, with superb arrangements, funky grooves, and some great vocalizing, all organized around the lyrical leitmotif of string theory. More>>

Non-Natural History: Dinosaur Eggs 'Discovered' At Auckland Gardens

Auckland Botanic Gardens plant curators have unearthed what are thought to be prehistoric dinosaur eggs in the Gondwana Forest section of the expansive garden in Manurewa... In fact, the “dinosaur eggs” are part of an innovative, larger-than-life dinosaur performance and display featuring a raptor, a crested therapod and a towering Tyrannosaurus Rex. More>>

For The Birds: Kōkako Crowned Bird Of The Year

The Kōkako has been crowned New Zealand's Bird of the Year after two weeks of close competition and heated campaigning. More>>

ALSO:

  • Greening the Red Zone - Bird of the year heats up: kōtare concedes, backs kea
  • Image Out-Link - Giselle Clarkson on Twitter
  • Get More From Scoop

     
     

    LATEST HEADLINES

     
     
     
     
    Culture
    Search Scoop  
     
     
    Powered by Vodafone
    NZ independent news